Sophia Bekele is the Founder & CEO of PanAfrican DCA Group and CBS International, a tech-transfer firm based in California. She is also the Chairwoman of GEDA Investment Group a pan-African initiative with interest in the strategic sector of Africa’s economy, currently heavily vested in technology, Financial, Media and Real Estate sectors .Ms. Bekele is a widely acknowledged business leader, international entrepreneur, corporate governance expert, global policy advisor and public engagement specialist, an activist and philanthropist, whose wide-ranging experience spans both the public and private sectors.
As an Entrepreneur, Bekele has founded and run various international tech start-ups, implementing successful nation building digital infrastructure projects in Africa as well as launching early stage US companies into new markets. Bekele is well known for running the 6 year highly acclaimed “Yes2dotAfrica” campaign to brand Africa under a united domain name on the internet ".Africa" and pioneering the first PanAfrican women-in-tech program, "Miss.Africa Digital " and associated seed-fund grant.
Early in her career, as an International Corporate Executive, Bekele achieved a successful track record working for different Fortune 500 Companies in the Banking industry, in the field of Business & IT, & Systems Security Auditing and Risk Management & Enterprise systems. She has continued to draw on this background in her current professional engagements. Bekele is a strong advocate of accountability and transparency improvements in all facets of her engagements & holding public authorities and the private sector to such high standards.
Bekele has been invited to give Keynotes in major Universities like California Berkeley, Yale, City University of New York, Lincoln University, and speak at other highly visible global platforms such as United Nations Geneva, ISACA SF, the New York Forum for Africa, Crans-Montana, Quantum Global, EurAfrican Forum, on her work in Business, Technology, Women and Youth. Bekele has also moderated high-level boards and Panels. She has served on Global advisory Boards at the UN, ICANN and Education Board of Golden Gate University as well as other public policy think thanks.
Bekele's work has been widely recognized by independent institutions and the global media, having gained reputation from many quarters. She has been named; "Internet Governance Pioneer and Industry Trailblazer" by CIO East Africa, "Top 2 ICT Women in Africa and Women to Watch" by BloomBerg TV, "African Trailblazer – Future Made in Africa" by UK based NewAfrican Magazine, Pioneer Women-In-Tech and Women working hard to close the gender gap & shaping the continent’s social, political and economic landscape. Her work in Women-in-Tech has been recognized by United Nations Awards. Bekele has also been recognized as the "Brains behind .africa," by Diplomat East Africa for her successfully initiating, championing and defining a united identity for African through a single domain name.